Mark Simpson

Born 26 September 1988
Mark Simpson
Mark Simpson

Mark Simpson Biography (BBC)

Born in 1988 in Liverpool, in 2006 at the age of 17 Mark Simpson became the first ever winner of both the BBC Young Musician of the Year and BBC Proms/Guardian Young composer of the Year Competitions.

The BBC commissioned him to write the opening work for the 2012 Last Night of the Proms and in 2013 the BBC Symphony Orchestra perform his composition ‘A mirror-fragment…’ at the Barbican. He gives recitals at Wigmore Hall, Royal Festival Hall and the Purcell Room and premieres works by Simon Holt and Jonathan Harvey. He is currently a fellow on the Jerwood Opera Writing scheme.

As a clarinettist Mark has appeared as soloist with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic (Vassily Petrenko), Northern Sinfonia (Yan Pascal Tortelier), BBC Philharmonic (Gianandrea Noseda), City of London Sinfonia, Manning Camerata, BBC Concert Orchestra, Oxford Philomusica and the Cambridge Philharmonic Orchestra. In 2008 he was a soloist in the BBC Last Night of the Proms in Hyde Park. Further afield he has given recitals at the Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, BeethovenFest in Bonn, Denver Colorado as a Lakewood Music Scholar, and toured the Middle East. During 2009/10 he was artist in residence with the Northern Chamber Orchestra.

Mark has had his compositions performed by some of the country’s leading orchestras and ensembles. In 2008 he wrote ‘Threads’ for the National Youth Orchestra, Nur Musik for oboe and ensemble commissioned by Ensemble 10/10, and ‘A mirror-fragment...’ for orchestra commissioned by the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra. In 2011 the Aronowitz Ensemble performed his Los Proverbios at the Royal Concergebouw and in 2012 the Meiningen Symphony Orchestra performed ‘A mirror-fragment…’ in Germany. He has also written for the pianist Richard Uttley and the Mercury Quartet and in 2010 won the Royal Philharmonic Society’s Composition Award for which he wrote Lethe for trombone and ensemble performed at the Royal Festival Hall.

Mark is deeply committed to the performance of new music. His debut CD was released on the NMC label and saw the culmination of five years of working with composers Mark-Anthony Turnage, Gary Carpenter, David Horne, Kenneth Hesketh, Gavin Higgins, Emily Howard and Stephen Pratt, developing new works for the clarinet and basset clarinet.

Mark read Music at St. Catherine’s College Oxford graduating with first class honours. This summer he completed an MMus in composition with Julian Anderson at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama supported by the Ralph Vaughan Williams Trust. He studied clarinet with Nicholas Cox at the Junior School of the Royal Northern College of Music and now studies privately with Mark van der Wiel.

Mark Simpson Biography (Wikipedia)

Mark Simpson (born 26 September 1988) is a British composer and clarinettist from Liverpool, who won the BBC Young Musician of the Year 2006 title on 20 May 2006, playing Nielsen's Clarinet Concerto with the Northern Sinfonia and Yan Pascal Tortelier at The Sage Gateshead. In the same year, Simpson was also the winner of the BBC Young Composer of the Year competition, becoming the only person in history to have ever won both competitions.

He resides in Merseyside and attended King David High School, Liverpool before attending the Royal Northern College of Music junior department where he studied clarinet with Nicholas Cox.

He was also Principal Clarinet in the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain, playing a Peter Eaton clarinet. After a term at the Royal College of Music, Simpson spent the rest of his gap year in Berlin, and attended St. Catherine's College, Oxford University reading for a BA in Music from 2008–2011.

He is a composer, who was commissioned by the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic and National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain to write his first orchestral piece, Threads for Orchestra , which premièred at The Sage Gateshead on 1 April 2008. His It Was As if the Earth Stood Still was broadcast over BBC Radio 3's "Hear and Now" in November 2005, and his Lov(escape) in the concert he gave as one of the finalists in the Young Musician competition in September 2006. In 2015 he was announced as the BBC Philharmonic's Composer in Association.

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